Over the last week or so, I’ve been flipping through my new copy of Stitch ‘n Bitch Superstar Knitting. I pick it up and read a few paragraphs, put it down, then mull it over for a while. There’s a lot of information in that book. I started with the section on color stranding and intarsia, moved on to cables, and now I’m into the lace section.
I consider myself pretty well versed in color stranding, and Debbie Stoller has it all covered in this new book. Want to know how to hold two yarns at once? You get illustrations and instructions for five methods. Have you heard of yarn dominance? There’s a picture of a swatch and a section called, “Who’s on first?” that explains it in detail. Thinking about steeking? There are details about the three steeking techniques, along with prerequisites and the upside and downside for each. Need to catch some long floats? Stoller explains how to catch floats on the knit side, the purl side, and with your left hand and your right hand — basically, no matter how you hold your yarn, there’s an illustration here to show you the path to yarn catching enlightenment.
Other than color stranding, Stoller covers intarsia, cables (including doing it without a needle), lace, knitting with beads & embellishing with embroidery, and a whole section that she calls “Stitch Witchery” which includes at least 10 cast on methods and 10 bind off methods and so much more (kitchener in stockinette, reverse stockinette, garter stitch, and ribbing…the mind boggles). It’s too much to read in a week, but I’m making room on the priority knitting book shelf for this one, because I want to be able to pull it off the shelf when I need it, which could be often.
Best of all, the book is written in that trademark voice that we fell in love with in the first Stitch ‘n Bitch and have become so familiar with in the subsequent installments. She’s funny! And a little racy! And so full of encouragement! And now she’s got a book to rival the best knitting reference text for experienced knitters.
There is even a whole section entitled “How to Create Your Own Patterns” and has formulas and schematics and diagrams and I haven’t even read that part yet.
But wait, there’s more. Because I haven’t even mentioned the patterns! I have pictures of a few of my favorite designs, all used with permission of the publisher.
I have never knit a project with beads, but this might need to be my first.
The Empire Strikes Back Dress by Tricia Royal
I love the layered look in this pic, and the styling. OMG the styling. Yes, a tunic is not something I could ever wear, but how cute is it?
Hip Hop Blanket by Jennifer Lippman-Bruno
Extreme intarsia! My mom is a baby blanket knitter extraordinaire, so I need to show her this one. Cute and challenging!
Sparkle Sweater by Sonya Laska
How chic is this pattern? Again, I am intrigued with the beads, and tempted to knit with them.
The Life Aquatic by Serena Murphy
Maybe you can’t see it in this small picture, but this yoke design has fishies on it. Fishies!
Now for the giveaway portion of our program. The nice folks at Workman have agreed to let me give away 3 copies of Stitch ‘n Bitch Superstar Knitting to 3 of my readers!
To enter, please leave a comment on this post by Wednesday, November 3rd at 6pm. Only one entry per person, international commenters are most welcome! Good luck!